My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing – ARC Review

my lovely wife by samantha downing.jpgSummary:

Dexter meets Mr. and Mrs. Smith in this wildly compulsive debut thriller about a couple whose fifteen-year marriage has finally gotten too interesting…

Our love story is simple. I met a gorgeous woman. We fell in love. We had kids. We moved to the suburbs. We told each other our biggest dreams, and our darkest secrets. And then we got bored.

We look like a normal couple. We’re your neighbors, the parents of your kid’s friend, the acquaintances you keep meaning to get dinner with.

We all have secrets to keeping a marriage alive.

Ours just happens to be getting away with murder.

Review: 5 Stars

My Lovely Wife had me hooked from the first chapter and the only reason I didn’t finish it in one sitting was to sleep. This thriller provided a different perspective than others on the market, the perspective of those behind the murders. I found myself not only on the edge of my seat, but also rooting for the villains of the story to get away with murder. My Lovely Wife started out as the most twisted love story ever, but evolved into so much more than that. Trust me thriller fans, this is a book that you won’t want to miss.

The writing was absolutely addictive. Details of family life were shared, making a couple who bonded over murder absolutely human and likable. These are characters that you would root against in any other scenario, but the way this story was told you can’t help but relate to these twisted characters. The pacing never slowed down and there were no unnecessary details. You can’t help but fly through this story and be left in awe of the writing and plotting.

The main character is never referred to by his name, only as Dad or the husband of Millicent. I found myself wondering the implications of this after reading and I think it helped me as a reader see him as a husband and a father rather than a murderer. In contrast I could see Millicent as cold or cruel, but I found myself sympathetic to the father in the story. It both keeps you at a distance and makes him relatable at the same time.

Luckily the blurb gives very little about the plot away and neither will I, this is a story that is best read when it is allowed to unfold naturally. This thriller managed to stand out in a genre full of novels trying to grab your attention. My Lovely Wife was a sadistic love story wrapped in the packaging of a psychological thriller. I loved every second of reading and as a critical reader I can’t come up with any aspect that I didn’t love. I highly recommend this book to anyone who is a fan of the mystery or thriller genre.

58 thoughts on “My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing – ARC Review

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  1. I’m on the publisher’s international list and they sent me the widget to get this from NetGalley, and I’m very, very tempted, because it does sound very different. Hm… decisions, decisions, decisions…

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  2. Fantastic review! I loved this one too. Absolutely rooted for the husband too and think she meant for us too with the no name thing. It was such an original thriller that I am wondering if anything will top it this year!

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    1. I loved the fact that their was no name!!! I loved it so much! I love perspectives like this in thrillers. It kind of reminds me of both Believe Me by JP Delaney (because I never knew what to believe) and Jar of Hearts by Jennifer Hillier (because of the unique perspective). If you haven’t read those I would highly recommend them. Some of my favorite thrillers from the summer.


      1. It was very unique and made it top notch, I think. Yes, both of those were favorite thrillers of mine last year. I can’t wait to read Delaney’s new book. I haven’t looked to see if Hillier has a new one coming out, but I really hope so! Jar of Hearts was brilliant!

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      2. Life and Other Inconveniences by Kristan Higgins, The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware, and especially The Last Widow by Karin Slaughter–but I just need to get my hands on an ARC of that one, haha!


      3. They are! Karin Slaughter is my favorite, so I will be requesting that one as soon as it becomes available. I loved The Death of Mrs. Westaway-my favorite by Ware yet.

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      4. She’s fabulous! Very graphic and violent but I don’t mind it with her because she’s not violent unnecessarily, if that makes sense. The Good Daughter is my favorite of her standalones. That Ruth Ware book is so good, and I’m going to read it as soon I get through my June ARCS.

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      5. I don’t mind graphic violence. I have to check which titles of Slaughter’s I have. I am going to see if anyone wants to read The Death of Mrs Westaway this month with me.


      6. I just found the two Karen Slaughter books that I have and I do have a copy of The Good Daughter! I also have Unseen, which I guess is 7th in the Will Trent series. Awesome that I just so happen to have your favorite of hers!


      7. That’s fantastic! It’s definitely my favorite standalone. If you do plan on reading the Will Trent series, make sure you read the Grant County one first. There’s a character from that series who is introduced in Will Trent probably in book 4, so it’s best to know the backstory. I love those books and am so excited a new one in the series comes out this year! I hope you find someone to read Mrs. Westaway with you!

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      8. Okay, I’m a little confused. I looked up Will Trent and Grant County and they seem to be two different series. Which book in the series do you think I should read before reading Unseen? I have book 7 in the Will Trent series. I had no idea that it was even part of a series when I got it.

        I think I’m just going to read The Good Daughter first and then if I do wind up being a Karin Slaughter fan I will try and read the series from the beginning.

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      9. They are two different series. Grant County was written first, but one of the characters from that series that was a huge fan favorite was introduced into the Will Trent series. You probably could read Will Trent without reading GC, but I always tell people to read it first because this person’s backstory is pretty important-the entire GC series was about her, so I feel like you’d miss out not knowing it if you didn’t read that series before reading the Will Trent series. If you decide to read the series from the beginning, then I would start with Blindsighted, book 1 in Grant County.

        That’s probably a good idea. She’s got a few standalones too that you could read. The Good Daughter and the Will Trent Series have both been optioned for a tv series, so I’m excited about that!

        Liked by 1 person

      10. Okay, so if I do wind up loving her you would recommend reading the Grant County series first and then the Will Trent series? Wow you must really love this author if you have read over 12 of her books.

        Liked by 1 person

      11. Definitely, I would start there. I do love her…all 19 books and her novellas–she can write a grocery list and I’ll read it. But there are several series that I read that are in the mid20s or so in the series. Once I like a series, I stick with it until they stop writing it.

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